I have seen a lot of Robins today –maybe 100 or more on the short drive to the park. A car next to me clipped one and my heart sank. I thought of Dillard’s water bug and how I refuse to read books about animals because they almost always end badly. Pop used to say when you saw robins, that meant spring. Last week, my father-in-law said the finches were starting to turn from green to yellow and that meant spring. I find I am impatient. I’m overwhelmed by all that has to unfold between now and then –with my home, with school. I find I am annoyed by the cold.
Today, the sun is shining in a cloudless sky without warmth. I walk to the stone bridge, dodging goose droppings. I sit the edge of the bridge. The wind cuts at my hands, my ears, and my chin. I am unprotected and my hair is still wet. Only my feet are warm. I’m grateful for my riding boots.
The pond moves like custard. My blood feels the same. The creek is low and offers a mere trickle; its rocks are more visible today. Where before they went unnoticed, now they have come to the show to stand and contrast things –the water, the debris, the trash. There are no mallards today. The creek subsides.
I can hear music lapping against the meek sounds of water. Myers Park Methodist is around the corner. I picture an organist practicing for a Sunday service, a throng of robed children kicking each other in between songs. But these are memories of church in childhood and not reality.
The geese talk amongst themselves and move with the thick water. They don’t care about my presence today. A couple wobbles on roller skates; they stop and look at me. I guess it must be strange to see a girl sitting on a bridge, writing, staring back. My butt may be frozen to the bridge and isn’t interested in birds or strangers, only warm things. Static-laden blankets. Potato soup and grilled cheese sandwiches. Staying in bed with three dogs and three cats, not being able to move because of their sand bag effect. But there is peace here listening to church music and the trickling water, even if it’s a cold peace. My new home is still in chaos, but at least we’re in it. I am grateful for the moment, even with a numb chin and runny nose.